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Children and COVID-19 Research Library

UNDER DEVELOPMENT UNICEF Innocenti's curated library of COVID-19 + Children research

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46 - 56 of 56
Mental health effects of school closures during COVID-19

AUTHOR(S)
Joyce Lee

Published: April 2020   Journal: The Lancet Child & Adolescent Health
The coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic—and the social distancing measures that many countries have implemented—have caused disruptions to daily routines. As of April 8, 2020, schools have been suspended nationwide in 188 countries, according to UNESCO. Over 90% of enrolled learners (1·5 billion young people) worldwide are now out of education. For children and adolescents with mental health needs, such closures mean a lack of access to the resources they usually have through schools. In a survey by the mental health charity YoungMinds, which included 2111 participants up to age 25 years with a mental illness history in the UK, 83% said the pandemic had made their conditions worse. 26% said they were unable to access mental health support; peer support groups and face-to-face services have been cancelled, and support by phone or online can be challenging for some young people.
Cite this research | Open access | Vol.: 4 | Issue: 6 | No. of pages: 8 | Language: English | Topics: Education, Mental Health, Health | Tags: adolescents, children, mental health, pandemic, COVID-19 | Countries: United Kingdom
Effects of COVID‐19 Lockdown on Lifestyle Behaviors in Children with Obesity Living in Verona, Italy: A Longitudinal Study

AUTHOR(S)
Angelo Pietrobelli; Luca Pecorato; Alessandro Ferruzzi (et al.)

Published: April 2020   Journal: Obesity Society

 The coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic has had far-reaching health, social, and economic implications. Among them is the abrupt cessation of school programs for children and adolescents in Italy who by mandate had to remain in their homes during the “lockdown” aimed at containing and mitigating spread of COVID19. There are reasons to be concerned about housebound children and adolescents who have overweight and obesity; previous studies have supported the hypothesis that these youths will fare worse on weight-control lifestyle programs while at home compared with when they are engaged in their usual school curriculum.

1).
have supported the hypothesis that these youths will fare worse on
weight-control lifestyle programs while at home compared with when
they are engaged in their usual school curriculum (1)
COVID-19, School Closures, and Child Poverty: A Social Crisis in the Making

AUTHOR(S)
Wim Van Lancker; Zachary Parolin

Institution: The Lancet
Published: April 2020   Journal: The Lancet Public Health
While coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) continues to spread across the globe, many countries have decided to close schools as part of a physical distancing policy to slow transmission and ease the burden on health systems. The UN Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization estimates that 138 countries have closed schools nationwide, and several other countries have implemented regional or local closures. These school closures are affecting the education of 80% of children worldwide. Although scientific debate is ongoing with regard to the effectiveness of school closures on virus transmission, the fact that schools are closed for a long period of time could have detrimental social and health consequences for children living in poverty, and are likely to exacerbate existing inequalities. We discuss two mechanisms through which school closures will affect poor children in the USA and Europe.
A few lessons from responding to the Ebola crisis in West Africa
Institution: UNHCR - United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees
Published: March 2020
As UNHCR prepares to respond to a potential outbreak of COVID 19 in refugee, internally displaced persons (IDP) settings, the Evaluation Service offered to do a quick extraction of key findings and recommendations emerging from independent assessments of similar responses – with specific reference to Ebola (other outbreaks may also be relevant but are beyond the scope of this first review).
Age profile of susceptibility, mixing, and social distancing shape the dynamics of the novel coronavirus disease 2019 outbreak in China

AUTHOR(S)
Juanjuan zhang; Maria Litvinova; Yuxia Liang (et al.)

Published: March 2020   Journal: MedRXiv
Strict interventions were successful to control the novel coronavirus (COVID-19) outbreak in China. As transmission intensifies in other countries, the interplay between age, contact patterns, social distancing, susceptibility to infection and disease, and COVID-19 dynamics remains unclear. To answer these questions, we analyze contact surveys data for Wuhan and Shanghai before and during the outbreak and contact tracing information from Hunan Province. Daily contacts were reduced 7-9 fold during the COVID-19 social distancing period, with most interactions restricted to the household. Children 0-14 years were 59% (95% CI 7-82%) less susceptible than individuals 65 years and over. A transmission model calibrated against these data indicates that social distancing alone, as implemented in China during the outbreak, is sufficient to control COVID-19. While proactive school closures cannot interrupt transmission on their own, they reduce peak incidence by half and delay the epidemic. These findings can help guide global intervention policies.
Mitigate the Effects of Home Confinement on Children During the COVID-19 Outbreak

AUTHOR(S)
Guanghai Wang; Yunting Zhang

Institution: The Lancet
Published: March 2020   Journal: The Lancet
In response to the coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) outbreak, the Chinese Government has ordered a nationwide school closure as an emergency measure to prevent spreading of the infection. Public activities are discouraged. The Ministry of Education estimates that more than 220 million children and adolescents are confined to their homes; this includes 180 million primary and secondary students and 47 million preschool children). Thanks to the strong administrative system in China, the emergency home schooling plan has been rigorously implemented. Massive efforts are being made by schools and teachers at all levels to create online courses and deliver them through TV broadcasts and the internet in record time. The new virtual semester has just started in many parts of the country, and various courses are offered online in a well organised manner. These actions are helping to alleviate many parents' concerns about their children's educational attainment by ensuring that school learning is largely undisrupted.
Systematic Review of COVID‐19 in Children Shows Milder Cases and a Better Prognosis Than Adults

AUTHOR(S)
Jonas F. Ludvigsson

Published: March 2020   Journal: Acta Paediatrica

The coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID‐19) pandemic has affected hundreds of thousands of people. Data on symptoms and prognosis in children are rare. A systematic literature review was carried out to identify papers on COVID‐19, which is caused by the severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS‐CoV‐2), using the MEDLINE and Embase databases between January 1 and March 18, 2020.

Protecting the psychological health of children through effective communication about COVID-19

AUTHOR(S)
Louise Dalton; Elizabeth Rapa; Alan Stein

Published: 2020   Journal: The Lancet Child & Adolescent Health
The attention of the world is rightly focused on measures to mitigate the transmission and economic effect of the 2019 novel coronavirus disease (COVID-19) pandemic. In this rapidly changing situation, media and social conversations are entirely dominated by the outbreak, and children are exposed to large amounts of information and high levels of stress and anxiety in the adults around them. Parents would do anything to protect their children from distress and might avoid talking about difficult feelings and events. However, research shows that even children as young as 2 years are aware of the changes around them. Sensitive and effective communication about life-threatening illness has major benefits for children and their family's long-term psychological wellbeing.

Cite this research | Open access | Vol.: 4 | Issue: 5 | No. of pages: 2 | Language: English | Topics: Mental Health, Child Protection | Tags: child mental health, children, pandemic, COVID-19 response, COVID-19
COVID-19: How prepared are global education systems for future crises?
This research brief is one of a series exploring the effects of COVID-19 on education. It focuses on how school closures affect children and the resiliency of education systems to respond to such disruptions and mitigate their effect.
Research Brief: Impacts of Pandemics and Epidemics on Child Protection: Lessons learned from a rapid review in the context of COVID-19

 

This research brief summarizes the findings of a rapid review that collates and synthesizes evidence on the child protection impacts of COVID-19 and previous pandemics, epidemics and infectious disease outbreaks. It provides lessons for global and national responses to COVID19 and recommendations for future research priorities.

The evidence on the impacts of pandemics and epidemics on child protection outcomes is limited and skewed towards studies on the effects of HIV/AIDS on stigma. There is also some evidence on the effects of Ebola on outcomes such as orphanhood, sexual violence and exploitation, and  school enrolment, attendance and dropout. The evidence on other pandemics or epidemics, including COVID-19. is extremely limited.

There are various pathways through which infectious disease outbreaks can exacerbate vulnerabilities, generate new risks and result in negative outcomes for children. Outcomes are typically multi-layered, with immediate outcomes for children, families and communities - such as being orphaned, stigmatization and discrimination and reductions in household income - leading to further negative risks and outcomes for children in the intermediate term. These risks include child labour and domestic work, harmful practices (including early marriage), and early and adolescent pregnancy.

Lessons from previous pandemics and epidemics suggest that the following could mitigate the child protection risks:

  • Responding to children in vulnerable circumstances, including orphans (e.g. throughpsychosocial interventions focused on improving mental health and community-based interventions that provide families with resources and access to services)
  • Responding to stigmatization and discrimination (e.g. throughinformation and communication campaigns and support from public health systems, communities and schools)
  • Investing in social protectionenable livelihoods during outbreaks and to counteract shocks
  • Promoting access to health, protective and justice services, which may be restricted or suspending during infectious disease outbreaks
  • Ensuring continued access to education, particularly for girls, who may be adversely affected

There is a high burden of proof for data collection during the current COVID-19 outbreak than there would be in normal circumstances. Evidence generation strategies during and after the COVID-19 crisis should consider rigorous retrospective reviews and building upon monitoring, evidence and learning functions of pre-existing programmes – particularly where there is ongoing longitudinal data collection. There should also be efforts to synthesize evidence from existing research on the effectiveness of interventions that respond to the key risk pathways identified in this review.

 

 

 

A Rapid Review of Economic Policy and Social Protection Responses to Health and Economic Crises and Their Effects on Children: Lessons for the COVID-19 pandemic response

This rapid review seeks to inform the initial and long-term public policy responses to the COVID-19 pandemic, by assessing evidence on past economic policy and social protection responses to health and economic crises and their effects on children and families. The review focuses on virus outbreaks/emergencies, economic crises and natural disasters, which, like the COVID-19 pandemic, were 'rapid' in onset, had wide-ranging geographical reach, and resulted in disruption of social services and economic sectors, without affecting governance systems. Evidence is also drawn from the HIV/AIDS pandemic, due to its impacts on adult mortality rates and surviving children.

The available evidence on the effects of economic policy and social protection responses is uneven across outcomes, regions, and type of policy response as a large body of literature focused on social assistance programmes. Future research on the COVID-19 pandemic can prioritize the voices of children and the marginalized, assess the effects of expansionary and austerity measures,  examine the role of design and implementation, social care services, pre-existing macro-level health, demographic and health conditions and the diverse regional health and economic impacts of the pandemic. The paper also provides key lessons for public policy responses to the COVID-19 pandemic.

 

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UNICEF Innocenti's Children and COVID-19 Library is a database collecting research from around the world on COVID-19 and its impacts on children and adolescents.

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COVID-19 & Children: Rapid Research Response

UNICEF Innocenti is mobilizing a rapid research response in line with UNICEF’s global response to the COVID-19 crisis. The initiatives we’ve begun will provide the broad range of evidence needed to inform our work to scale up rapid assessment, develop urgent mitigating strategies in programming and advocacy, and preparation of interventions to respond to the medium and longer-term consequences of the COVID-19 crisis. The research projects cover a rapid review of evidence, education analysis, and social and economic policies.